The University of Sussex has appointed Professor Adam Tickell as its new Vice-Chancellor. He will replace current Vice-Chancellor Michael Farthing on 1st September 2016.

Tickell is the current provost and Vice-Principal at the University of Birmingham, and has previously held roles at Royal Holloway. Professor Tickell’s expertise and research lie in Economic Geography.

Christian Brodie, Chair of the University of Sussex’s Council, described Tickell as ” exactly the right person to take Sussex forward as the University builds on its outstanding international teaching and research reputation.

“Adam’s personal and professional credentials reflect the attributes which made Sussex so special when it was established in the 1960s and what makes it an exceptional institution now in the twenty first century.”

Professor Tickell said: “I’ve long been aware that the University of Sussex is home to many thought-leaders and researchers who are driving positive change throughout the world, and having real influence in their fields of endeavour.

“Since it was founded, the University has had a distinctive ethos based upon a commitment to interdisciplinary learning, research and scholarship and a global outlook. Sussex’s high-quality teaching has earned it a well-deserved global reputation in the sector and I’m looking forward to working with staff to see how the University can enhance the great student experience even further.

“Given the many global challenges that we face, universities have a vital role in contributing economically and socially to society.  I am both delighted and honoured to be joining the University of Sussex at a time when it is looking to build substantially on its achievements.”

An active twitter user, Tickell has posted about the upcoming EU Referendum, retweeting posts from the group “Students for Europe” and Brighton Pavilion’s Green MP, Caroline Lucas.

Earlier this year, University of Sussex Students’ Union (USSU) research revealed that students wanted a new Vice-Chancellor who cared about ‘social justice’ and ‘equality’. USSU asked over 250 students to tell them what sort of Vice-Chancellor they wanted by constructing a ‘values map’, placing a green dot next to the qualities they most liked, and a red dot by those they least wanted. The least desired quality was ‘wealth’.

Abe Baldry, incumbent president of the Students’ Union, said: “I am delighted that Adam Tickell is the next person to lead Sussex. Students were an integral part of the selection process and in interview, Adam demonstrated that he has the vision, skills and the democratic leadership style that this institution so desperately needs to succeed in the next decade.”

Baldry sat on the panel to elect Professor Tickell, the first time that Sussex’s Students’ Union President has been involved in the Vice-Chancellor selection process.

The Badger also asked Annie Pickering, Students’ Union President elect, for her thoughts on the choice. She said: “I am pleased to see [Professor Tickell] is from a social science background and hope that he will understand the importance of engaging with students and listening to students and the Students’ Union. I look forward to building a more positive relationship with the Students’ Union and our new Vice Chancellor.”

Miriam Steiner and Freya Marshall Payne

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